Lynn & Justin, Part 1

Last year, we ran a post from Lynn, about what it was like to be a Motherless Bride. It was about how, even though her mother was never her best friend, planning a wedding without her mother was one of the hardest things she’d ever done. So today I’m honored to share Lynn’s wedding graduate story, in two parts. This first part of the story is about the emotional realities of the wedding—that it wasn’t the best day of her life, though it clearly was a great party. Getting married is such an emotionally complicated infinitely surprising process, that I love when women dive into the complexity of that—which Lynn does with such grace.

Even with all my awareness and practicality, I lost myself somewhere and became some weird caricature of myself; like not my REAL self, but the one I portray on Facebook. Case in point: Me: “But I want to wear the pretty shoes.” MOH: Stunned silence I had tons of roles to play; the beautiful bride, the adoring teary daughter, the grateful friend, the gracious host…I just wanted to be Lynn, I kept saying to myself all day “Am I doing this right?”

It all started quite innocently when Justin and I finally decided to have a family celebration to honor what we had already been living for the past five years… that we were committed, through triumph and challenge.  In all honesty, our real “marriage ceremony” was a 2500 mile move across country with vows of “I’m unemployed in the worst economy,” and, “I’ll leave a job I love for you,” and, “I’ll pack up the whole house (cats included) without you,” and, “I’ll make decisions on where we live without consulting you.”  Followed by a lack-luster “reception” of trying to establish new roots in a community culture we didn’t understand and sobbing nights of doubt on whether we should use the last bit of our savings to move back “home.”  What I am trying to say is… Justin and I were already married, but I wanted a party.  A super great party filled with all the uniqueness I could possibly fit into a converted barn.

Still reeling from the death of my mom, I was very clear with myself and Justin that we needed this celebration to mark forward momentum in life and to move through grief.   So, from the very beginning this thing was a loaded gun.

I think planning and participating in your own wedding is like creating a little microcosm of what I can only imagine married life may actually be like in the long run. I think back my excitement and tears, confusion and hurt, unexpected wonders, and tough decisions and I realized almost every possible scenario that life has to offer is played out during the wedding planning process.  It also suddenly puts every relationship you have ever had under a microscope, and for better or worst, the planning process highlights everything you love and everything you abhor about the people in your life.

People will not all of a sudden grow new personalities because of your wedding.  Take for instance my Dad.  We have a very complicated relationship (or very simple depending on how you interpret it).  He has never been a real presence in my life. Sure, he was there but he wasn’t really THERE.  So, when it came to assigning this “Father of the Bride” role, things just didn’t quite fit and I remember looking up about half way through the reception and realizing he was gone.  Just gone.  So typical.  If your bridesmaid is self-focused, or your groom is an introvert, the truth is you are going to be managing your reaction to these personality quirks throughout the planning process all the way through to your wedding.

I admit, I had terribly high and unrealistic expectations, but what’s worse is when events, like my wedding, inevitably fall short of my expectations I start to punish myself on two levels; first, on not meeting the expectations, and second, on setting the expectations too high in the first place.  And to add insult to injury, I am disappointed that I feel disappointed.  I mean, shouldn’t I be able to “snap out of it” and recognize what a fantastic event it really was?  As coined by the mental health professionals this is a perfect example of a “destructive thought cycle.”

I expected a lot from my wedding.  And, like most things, nothing turned out as expected, well, except for the rain. I didn’t feel peaceful and relaxed…I felt dizzy mostly.  I never got to finish my cup of coffee or even taste the hot-coco or cider.  Justin was by my side all day, we held hands, we danced, we cried together…but in all honesty we have been more “connected” as a couple at other people’s weddings.  Nothing made sense, it was quite the opposite; everything seemed staged and far removed from reality.  About 4 hours in, I ran out of energy and started to cry because I was “so done” with the wedding.  I have the exact same mental challenges with my often overwhelming depression today as I did before…only NOW without the awesome distraction of wedding project coordination.  And with the exception of a few (very, very few) close friends, nobody really brought the wedding up to talk about “how great it was.”  It reminded me of what happened after Mom died, how the whole world just kinda moves on.

This graduate post has been a difficult and confusing thing for me for one reason, the very tangible difference between what I know about my wedding and what I feel about my wedding.  Please see the very “type A personality” comparison list below.

Things I KNOW about my wedding (because there is photographic proof):

  • The details from the center pieces to the wall décor were amazing.
  • Everybody was smiling and laughing.
  • Lots of love was being showered on Justin and me.
  • Justin and I were side by side the whole day.

Things I FEEL about my wedding:

  • I never really talked to Justin.
  • I was exhausted.
  • Was I smiling and laughing enough? (I don’t know.)

I was hyper conscious of how I looked (and not in a positive “aren’t I pretty” way…but in a “god, this is going to be on film” way).

You may be saying to yourself “But this wedding looks so AWESOME.”  I say the exact same thing when I look at the pictures.  Over the past few months I have been trying to shift my paradigm about the wedding.  But the reality is that it is a constant struggle often filled with self shame over why I can’t seem to fully embrace the love that is so evident.

I wish I could resolve this post for you.  I too would like to be able to sum up my feelings with a great one-liner, but I think it all goes back to my idea that the wedding is kinda like married life, it often comes with unresolved feelings.

Photos By: Anne Nunn Photography

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  • tupelohoney

    So much of this post rings true for me. Lynn, thank you for sharing. Throughout the post I found myself saying, “yes”, “me, too”, “exactly”. Many of the lines resonated with me and have made me quite reflective of my own wedding… thank you.

  • Thank you for writing this. I needed to hear this this week. I have been trying to write about my wedding for the past year and while I can write a ton of anecdotes about the ‘funny mishapes,’ what I really feel is a lot of resentment still for the reasons behind those mishapes. In writing about it, I am also trying to change my feelings about it, to try and remember the love and smiles. But as you pointed out, I remember feeling very disconnected from my husband and friends and family as I played the role of ‘bride’ all day and I resent that I did that to myself.
    Thank you again for writing and maybe we can both move on and take solace in our marriage and leave the wedding behind.

    • Vmed

      This week I’m worried that I’ll feel this way at the wedding. Graduation ceremony was this weekend and my parents showed up to celebrate, but their presence made me unable to focus my attention on the fiance, who was my pillar during this degree, who deserved more than me being distracted by my suddenly needy parents (they only get that way about big events…).

      This post reminds me that our dynamics aren’t going to change for the wedding, which is reasonable! (and well written!) But also… I’m not so sure I want to deal with it. I don’t want to feel disconnected from J on my wedding day, after so much planning and care. I don’t want to resent my parents for that, like I kind of micro-resent them for weirding the atmosphere this commencement weekend.

      Thinking quite seriously about eloping.

      • clampers

        Do it!

      • I had this exact experience at my graduation in April with my mother. Exact feelings of abandoning my husband and his never-ending support to manage my mother. Solidarity sister.

        • Vmed

          Oh yes. Managing mothers indeed. : /

      • Lauren B

        Do it! do it! do it!!!!! And send pictures

        Fake needy parents are the worst.

      • Kristen

        Maybe meet somewhere in the middle on eloping/not eloping. How about doing a totally secret, just the two of you and however many required witnesses going to the courthouse to say your vows and having an incredible, intimate dinner a day or two before you parents show?

        You can always hope that things will change and fight against them or you can do a little tactic-swapping. I’m not saying that the needys should be indulged all of the time but if you can get part of what you need out of an event before they’re there taking energy and attention away, you may resent it less and then you may be better able to express yourself in a mature, productive way. (I know I tend to just wait until I’m too mad to handle things in a mature fashion and my options really do get down to either keeping my trap shut or saying things in a mean way.)

      • Dragon

        Think about asking someone else, or multiple other people, to take care of your parents throughout the wedding weekend. We have several difficult folks among our family and friends. They want/need a certain amount of attention but it doesn’t have to be from you. Just make sure that the people given the caretaker job are reasonable substitutes such as an old friend of theirs, your sibling and their spouse, so that they feel pampered, not neglected. You should still check in on them a couple of times, but someone else does the heavy lifting.

        A day of coordinator can also be helpful as a place to direct people. We’re warning all of our needies, especially my mom, that on the day of we don’t want to worry about details or problems so it all goes to the DOC.

  • Andrea

    Thanks for your post Lynn. What can I say? those pictures do look awesome! :)
    This post was very ‘real’ and I think the whole wedding (planning) is a constant reality check. “People will not all of a sudden grow new personalities because of your wedding”. So so true. My wedding is in 11 days, this made me reflect on my own expectations, thank you.

  • This is deep and wonderful. I’m loving the purple dress and just want to reach through and give you a hug. I’ve been feeling so much like that’s how it will be, this feeling of being on display, of being there but not having the peace to be connected. I love the description of your actual ceremony, the life bits.

    • That’s how ours went. J is not a big events-type person (and I’m not really either), so we didn’t have practice being in big crowds of people we know, and that made it kind of stressful for us on the day… even more so because those people were ALL wanting to talk to us and hug us and say wonderful things to us, while we were still kind of dazed by just how many of them there were and the fact that we hadn’t had quiet time alone all evening. And then the band was all “Can we get the bride and groom on the dance floor?!” And then the photographer was all “Come! Run! Sunset over the lake photos! Has to be right now!” And then someone needed us to cut the cake so the older people could leave. Etc.
      The ceremony was awesome, though. Better than I expected, even (and we wrote it, so it wasn’t a surprise)!

      They say there are ways to plan a wedding around being the types of people who are not comfortable being the center of attention (games and other activities, amongst other things). We didn’t do that for lots of reasons, and I wish we would have prepared ourselves a bit more for being the center of attention in a huge group (150 people).

  • Anne

    “the wedding is kinda like married life, it often comes with unresolved feelings”

    sounds like a memorable one-liner to me.

    Thank you Lynn.

  • Vee

    “our real “marriage ceremony” was a 2500 mile move across country…”

    I loved that whole section. This is such a good reminder that the ties that truly bind us are the challenges we confront together. That doesn’t make the wedding any less important for so many of us, but it’s comforting to know that we forge our own bond by overcoming the Hard Stuff.

    • I feel “married” already some days. We’ve already sacrificed a lot for the other — we also moved away together for my career. In my mind, the wedding makes official in the eyes of our family and friends what already feels official in my heart.

    • Edelweiss

      As odd as this might sound, I think you’re lucky to understand this distinction and feel disappointed in your festive marriage ceremony so early on in your marriage. How wonderful to tie your love and commitment to the acts of love you show each other as opposed to a day.

      In the future, I hope you continue to find blessings in your acts of love and in doing that, feel as though you have a vow renewal and celebration of love throughout your lives together. Not simply tying your celebration of love to a party that happened 5, 10, 25 years ago.

      • Lynn, thank you so much for this post. It’s honest and true self-assessments like this that make simply planning a wedding that much easier. For me, knowing that disappointment exists, and that things may not be perfect, makes those types of challenges less insurmountable. For me, it helps me to remember that as I plan my own wedding I need to remember to check in with myself and remind myself that I ALWAYS have grandiose insurmountable expectations and that I may need to revisit those to make sure that I know what I’m getting into. Weddings don’t always go as planned, but from the pictures, it looks like you had an amazing one. Where was your reception because it looks like a secret forest hideaway for the cool kids. And your dress is killer and your smile is real.

        • LOMO

          Hey Sarah –
          Thank you for your kind words. I wholeheartedly believe your wedding is going to be just right…it seems they always turn out that way; kinda like your puposal story, they always fit the couple perfectly.

          We got married at Blue Rooster Inn ( in Eugene, OR. It is one of those lucky places we just fell into from a referal from a friend. It was a killer deal, we got the site from Wednesday to Monday for under $2000. The owner is a little cooky, but who isn’t in Eugene.

    • Mallory

      I loved that section as well. I think those reasons are part of why it was hard for me to accept people’s sudden acceptance of our relationship once we were officially engaged. I had already left all the people I love most in the world (with the exception of him) and moved my life across the country to be with him. The engagement and the wedding are/will be wonderful, but uprooting my life…? THAT was my big act of commitment to him.

      • LOMO

        Way to go Mallory!

        Any couple that makes it through an up-root; leaving all their friends, family, jobs, etc deserves an extra special award in my book. It is the hardest thing Jus and I have ever done (and continues to be challenging as we find our way on the West Coast) Keeping your family together when you both feel overwhelming vulnerable is a milestone that should not go un-noticed.

    • Jeannine

      This section of the post also resonated with me as well. But overall, Lynn, thank you for your post: my wedding is coming up in a month and my feelings are all over the place, but at the core, is a deep worry the reason for which I can’t even pinpoint. Worry that my friends and family won’t enjoy themselves, and that I’ll be too worried about that to enjoy it myself, I suppose. That little voice in my head that distinguishes “what I fee”l from “what I know” as you put it is creating total havoc right now, since the “what I know” doesn’t even exist yet, in a certain sense. Somehow, reading your still-unresolved reflections is enormously comforting to me.

  • I am so happy to have read this post. The expectations we set on the wedding day aren’t always realistic. It’s so refreshing to hear some doubts and internal struggles about it.

    The wedding planning process has been filled with a lot of highs and lows and mids for me. I do feel like it’s a mini rollercoaster ride experience preparing us for marriage.

    Thank you so much for sharing.

  • clampers

    That dress! I die! SOOO gorgeous! And YOU are so gorgeous IN IT!!!

    [shallow comment…over]

    • Yes, seriously. Lynn — you’ve got style!

    • clairelizabeth

      Lynn! That dress is superamazing.

      And, as a knitter, I am swooning over the gorgeous SWEATERS you guys are wearing! Love them!

    • LOMO

      BTW, got it on Once Wed ( for a steal. Big girls can find used dresses too!

      The dress was a big suprize that Stormy (Groom’s Mom) and I cooked up. I was going to wear just the sweater and a nice ivory skirt, but about a month away from the big day had a panic attack and needed a dress.

      I hid the whole thing from Jus; can you imagine…a HUGE fuschia dress and crinoline hidden…not to mention several fitting appointments. I am lucky he is so trusing and doesn’t question my actions too often.

  • jenna

    Oh, Lynn! This is a wonderful, thoughtful, and very deep post and I am having so many Thoughts about it. But mostly I just wanted to tell you how brave I think you are for being able to write this post and that I truly thank you for it.

  • Lynn, thank you. Thank you for sharing something with us that is so deeply personal, well thought-out, and beautifully written. I FELT this post, deep down somewhere I can’t really put my finger on. Touching, just, so touching. I can’t wait to read part 2.

  • Things I FEEL about my wedding:
    I never really talked to Justin.
    I was exhausted.
    Was I smiling and laughing enough? (I don’t know.)

    This indeed – I felt the same way at my wedding, to be honest. It was a blur and I felt like I hardly even spent time with Josh – we were usually in two different places with other people, and we might have danced twice? I know there are photos that show everyone having a good time, but I do remember towards the end just feeling exhausted and almost wanting the day to be over so I could go home with my husband and just have quiet.

  • Seraphine

    I really appreciated this post. I haven’t had to deal with depression in relation to my wedding, but as for someone who has dealt with major depression for a large part of my life, so much of what you said resonated with me: how joyful events can often not feel joyful, there’s is often a distinction between “things I know” vs. “things I feel,” and everything is often accompanied by doubt, shame, angst, unhealthy thinking, etc. I’m glad that you are able to remind yourself that you don’t have to snap out of the complexity of your feelings, and I think it’s wonderful that you are willing to share the emotional complexity of your journey.

    • Katie Mae

      Exactly, Seraphine.
      Lynn, thank you for sharing this – it’s so brave and thoughtful. I have pretty complicated feelings about my wedding (last year) too, and the reminder that they can stay complicated and don’t need to be wrapped up neatly is helpful.

  • Shame blaster! (Pew pew!) Thank you for this post, Lynn. Seriously.

    I wish I could be one of those very close, very important friends you mention who brought up “how great it was” after the wedding.

    But, since I am just an internet creeper, I’ll instead say that I think YOU are pretty great for writing this – and gorgeous, and smart, and brave, and funny, and did I say gorgeous? (Seriously, those pearls . . .) – and that I and a lot of other brides-to-be and newlyweds are learning from you and pulling for you as you continue your emotional journey.

    So, you WEAR those pretty shoes, girl. You deserve it.

  • What you said about people’s personalities remaining the same, regardless of a wedding, is completely on point. Sometimes we get it in our heads that BECAUSE it’s a Wedding, the world will suddenly spin backwards and up will be down and wrong will be right – because it’s our special day. And it isn’t. And that’s ok.

    Expectations – as I am 100% well aware – are a hurtful bitch. BUT. You looked beautiful! I love the rustic elements – everything looked homey and sweet. Once the perfectionist clears, I hope you’ll be able to remember it that way as well

  • Your wedding seriously looks awesome! :). And you look fantastic and gorgeous, and it makes me wish I was wearing your dress!

  • Lynn!!!! Thank You so so much!!!!!!! I can’t even describe the love in my heart for you right now! I admit when I read all the Wedding Graduate posts about how they were surrounded by love and this awesome major love fest blew their mind at their wedding I feel afraid that I won’t feel that on my wedding day. You’ve made it ok to not feel that, and guess what you still got married and have an awesome husband!! Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing your truth with us – because it is a powerful truth and one I needed!

  • fleda

    Wow, all I can say is I FEEL THE SAME WAY. It’s great to hear these feelings so beautifully articulated. (You are a good writer, honey.)

    I was profoundly exhausted and NOT emotionally present at the wedding, we were NOT particularly connected as a couple; my perfectionist self still grimaces about this, as well as exactly eight (8) other distinct things that happened or that were done that did NOT conform to my idea of how the wedding should be (e.g., number seven: the dessert was pretty much universally pronounced not delicious; number two, the minister’s homily contradicted beliefs I hold dear; number five, the slide show that was supposed to be about our love for our families didn’t actually have too many pictures of our families in it; etc, etc, etc).

    It would be a lie to say these things don’t rankle still. Let’s face it, I’m not that relaxed and cool a person. But whatever, we’re married, we’re really glad about that, and we had a fun party that people enjoyed. I am a zealous guest at other people’s weddings–so much more fun in many ways!

  • Abby C.

    What a great post, Lynn! You get right to the heart of how complicated things are surrounding weddings and wedding planning.

    It’s an issue that I’ve been coming up against in the last couple of days, culminating last night with a bout of tears on my fiance’s shoulder. Engagement really is a transitional stage, and weddings are as much of an ending as they are a beginning. We say that in a good way – they mean the beginning of your new life with your love, creating your own baby family, but also in a way they represent the end of your old life, a passing of the torch down to your generation.

    I had this sudden wave of sadness last night when I realized sooner rather than later, it was going to be us watching our parents age, rather than our parents watching our grandparents age – that we were picking up the torch of adulthood in a totally new way. (I’m almost 30, I thought I’d been an adult for quite a while – but apparently it didn’t emotionally sink in. ) We’re not the young generation anymore. It was strangely sad to be hit upside the head with the realization of how relentless the passage of time is.

    • Dealing with your parents mortality (either death or aging) is almost impossibly hard. It forced you to grow up and face thing that in all honesty, most of us don’t want to face. Death and change and growing up and sadness…

      My dad died when I was 28, and my mother is in her 60s. I have trouble seeing her as aging, trouble facing the fact that she won’t be around forever either. Coming to terms with the loss of one hasn’t really made accepting the march of time easier for the other…

      Getting old sucks.*

      *Getting old and dying sucks, not the hitting 30 and growing up part. That part has some really great parts.

      • Abby C.

        Agreed, totally. And I wasn’t necessarily feeling that growing up and moving into a more adult place sucked, necessarily, just that it felt really BIG at that moment.

        Also, so sorry that you lost your Dad too soon. ::hugs::

  • I love this post. I’m not yet married — one more month to go — but I’ve certainly had moments where I’ve felt this way to a smaller degree. Moments where I’ve been extremely surprised at how I felt about the wedding or the events leading up to it. I can accept the notion that there may be a lot of unresolved feelings when it’s all said and done. I don’t love that idea, but you’re absolutely right — that’s life.

  • “I realized almost every possible scenario that life has to offer is played out during the wedding planning process. It also suddenly puts every relationship you have ever had under a microscope, and for better or worst, the planning process highlights everything you love and everything you abhor about the people in your life.”

    Absolutely perfect. My fiancè and I have been battling personalities within our respective families, bitter feelings, hard days–nights–weeks, and lots of stress with planning this wedding. It is so refreshing to both of us (I made him read it, too!) that we’re not alone in this.

    I’m sorry your wedding didn’t live up to your expectations. I feel like we’re very similar. I have all of these Type A crazy expectations of our wedding, but really, I need to just try to let myself enjoy it–I guess we’ll see how that goes.

    Thank you again for this. It was perfectly timed in my life.

    • IJA

      I was just going to quote this same passage! It really resonated with me. With one month to go, it seems like we’re seeing the worst side of many of those whom we love, and it is so frustrating and sad. But if we can just accept that the wedding won’t change their personalities and try to move forward, I think it will be alright. It’s amazing how much I’ve seen into all of these relationships over the past year, for better and for worse.

  • Sarah :: Jackson Riley

    Ah – big hugs, lady, and thank you for sharing. my sister would say that you’re having some Big Feelings and I would say that we’re supporting you going through them :)


  • “It also suddenly puts every relationship you have ever had under a microscope, and for better or worst, the planning process highlights everything you love and everything you abhor about the people in your life.”

    In your incredibly brave & wise post, this was my favorite line. I wish I’d had this nugget of wisdom during my wedding planning so I could’ve been more prepared for it. The beauty of this microscope effect was the reminder of who your true family & friends are, not just during the wedding planning, but always.

    Your wedding day is one day & just like any other day, sometimes it’s the best, sometimes it’s not. There is nothing wrong if you have complicated feelings about it. You seem to have a strong marriage & deep love for your husband- that is what matters!!! Best wishes to you & Justin~

    & I can’t help mentioning this- I LOVE your purple dress :-)

  • Hypothetical Sarah

    Thanks for sharing this, Lynn! I’m looking forward to Part 2.

    Things I KNOW about my wedding (because there is photographic proof)

    I think this was an important reminder (especially when looking at wedding porn online) that photographs don’t tell the whole story… and “selected photos” provide an even more curated view. That even a wedding as amazing as yours, with details and smiles and laughter, might seem less-than-perfect to its owners. When the boy and I eloped, I only had one role to play (beautiful bride) — and even in that simple situation, the cameras made me wonder if I was doing it right.

  • JEM

    Time for some deep introspective reflection. Thank you.

  • I know that this wedding (or probably any wedding for that matter) can’t be summed up in a one-liner. But girl you have two one-liners that really resonated with me:

    1. “The planning process highlights everything you love and everything you abhor about the people in your life.”
    YES. As many times as I’ve heard this on APW, it is still so true.

    2. “The wedding is kinda like married life, it often comes with unresolved feelings.”
    I didn’t realize how true this was until after my wedding. My wedding was awesome, as is marriage, but I can’t help that lingering murkiness about certain parts of both.

  • Abby C.

    Also, totally non-related geeky moment: the groom is wearing Durrow, isn’t he? Gotta love a knitterly wedding!

    • LOMO

      He sure is! Check out my Ravelry page (LOMO let’s be friends) and see my comments on the pattern…there are some suprises.

  • my wedding’s not for 3 more weeks, but I have a feeling this is pretty damn close to how I am going to feel afterwards. I never really felt a need to make our 9 year relationship “official” by getting married (and am struggling with the fact that some of the people on our lives do) but I also like a party. so, we’re throwing a wedding. but I am not sure I am looking forward to it as much as I “should” be….

    I intend to have a small hip flask in the pocket of my dress.
    you know, just in case.

    anywho, thanks. it’s always uber helpful to know there are other people out there who feel/have felt the same way and you are not alone.

    (and LOVE the sweaters. oh, to have your talent!)

  • Maureen

    LOVE this post. The know versus feel list?! Yes times 1,000 for my own wedding. The reson I have never written a wedding graduate post, actually. Thank you for normalizing my feelings!

  • “Nothing made sense, it was quite the opposite; everything seemed staged and far removed from reality. ”

    This! This is what I’m afraid of at this point in the planning, when the focus is on all the little details… I’m just like you, I build up GREAT EXPECTATIONS for everything, and if the actual day doesn’t turn out to be as breathtaking as it should be in my head? It’s a letdown.

    Again, it is JUST a day, but it’s hard for the Type As among us to sit back and let it happen without constantly analyzing each moment. Was the candlelight perfect? What about the flower arrrangements?! What if I picked the WRONG SONG to walk in to?!?!

    It doesn’t matter. :) Much love to you, Lynn.

  • “People will not all of a sudden grow new personalities because of your wedding.”

    Oh my Gawd, if only someone had told me this during my engagement! Wise words, lady. Wise words.

  • What an amazingly honest and beautiful post. I too have a strained relationship with my Dad, who was invited. He didn’t walk me down the aisle, we didn’t do a father daughter dance which meant we had to opt out of the mother son dance to not make it even more awkward. My Dad also left super early, also typical. It is interesting to read all the behind the scenes emotions and feelings that happen at a wedding that you never see in pictures.

  • Pingback: It's The Bride In Me – Wedding Graduates: Lynn & Justin, Part 1 « A Practical Wedding()

  • ML

    Lynn, thank you for this post. As someone who struggles with the “what i know”s vs. “what i feel”s and also the “shouldn’t i…”s in life, you words resonated with my core.

    And you.. you look BEAUTIFUL. you do look radiant, and peaceful. and damn that dress. love it.

  • Kristen

    Thank you. For this and your smarty-pants tips. I just had the ‘cruising down the highway sobbing with my pilot (read: not filthy rich like everyone seems to think and always in freaking Timbuktu when I need him ) fiance on the phone’ kind of morning. Then I followed it up with looking at the invited list vs. who is coming list and realizing that many of my family members have just flat turned out to be people that I’m never going to be friends with and I should probably stop trying because it’s at that pathetic stage.

    People aren’t going to change. A wedding is not going to suddenly bring an extended family that willingly chose to split up when the Queenpin (my grandma) died back together again. I just realized that I had been unconsciously hoping that this would be the event that brought everyone together again. It isn’t, and no matter how pretty, fun, or generally kickass it, and I am, it isn’t going to change and there’s nothing I could have done or can do differently.

    I hope that you can start to feel better about everything but please know how much better you’ve helped me feel.

    • Kristen

      Just because I have a compulsion to explain myself – the part about money is that people hear ‘pilot’ and think of the romantic years of being a pilot where they really did make some solid cash. People literally have said to me, “Ooooh! A pilot! You’re set for life!” um, false and even if true, that would still be a super awkward comment. But they hear that and think that paying for this whole thing ourselves is no big deal when it totally is.

  • April

    I hear you regarding the post-wedding blues. I struggle with depression at times, and after the wedding was over…after the family had left town…it flared up a little. We spend so much of our time and focus preparing for the day that when it is over there is sometimes that empty feeling…the sense of ‘well, what am I supposed to be focused on now?’ It may have been exacerbated by the fact that, like you, the fiance and I were already married for all intents and purposes, so nothing changed from Friday night to Sunday morning, yet everyone keeps asking how it’s different. Thanks so much for sharing your experience – even though it can be hard to talk through!